We often observe this day with a fun activity, grateful for the extra day off from our job and a long weekend to relax. Memorial Day was intended to honor those who've died serving their country.
On May 5, 1868, General John Logan proclaimed this day a holiday through his General Order No. 11. The day was entitled Decoration Day and was first observed on May 30, 1868. The northern states celebrated this day every year. Silly as it seems now, the southern states celebrated a day similar to this on a different day until sometime after World War I.
In 1882, the name Decoration Day was changed to Memorial Day, and in 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday to be held on the last Monday of May every year. Over the years it has come to serve as a day to remember all who've died in the past year as well as those U.S. men and women killed or missing in action in all wars.
|No man left behind - this
soldier carries his own 40
pounds of gear plus his
"It is, in a way, an odd thing to honor those who died in defense of our country in wars far away. The imagination plays a trick. We see these soldiers in our mind as old and wise. We see them as something like the Founding Fathers, grave and gray-haired. But most of them were boys when they died, they gave up two lives -- the one they were living and the one they would have lived. When they died, they gave up their chance to be husbands and fathers and grandfathers. They gave up their chance to be revered old men. They gave up everything for their county, for us. All we can do is remember." -- Ronald Wilson Reagan, Remarks at Veteran's Day ceremony, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia, November 11, 1985
|It's young men and women
sacrifice for us.
Never, never, never forget!